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Batteries & Home Backup
Home batteries are an excellent option for homeowners who deal with frequent power outages and blackouts, or who want to unlock more potential from a solar system by managing their energy use more strategically and efficiently.
How Home Batteries Work
Excess energy from your solar panels and inverters that isn’t immediately used to power the home can be stored in home battery modules. This stored power can then be used when and how it’s needed.
Home batteries have sophisticated discharge management capability, which allows homeowners to set preferences for the times and circumstances in which to use stored energy, and the devices and appliances to power in those circumstances.
- Solar panels produce power for use in the home. Solar panels convert photons from sunlight into DC power, which is converted into usable AC power by the inverter.
Excess energy produced charges home battery. Power produced by solar panels that is not used to power the home is stored in the home battery.
Energy stored in battery used to power the home. Batteries are discharged to power the home. This can be at night, during grid outages, or at times when utility rates are higher.
Why Install A Home Battery?
For Later Use
A home battery allows you to store energy produced by your solar panels for use at night, on cloudy days, and at other times when your panels aren’t producing power.
Storing energy in a home battery keeps you prepared for power outages and blackouts. Many solar systems are also capable of recharging batteries while the grid is down, ensuring power during extended outages.
Home batteries are a great way to manage energy usage by time of day – ideal for energy billing structures that charge a premium during specific time windows.
How to Think About Home Battery Backup
Homeowners who can get the most value out of battery backup are those who live in areas with frequent utility outages, either due to rolling blackouts or severe weather. A homeowner who lives in an extremely hot climate, for example, might find it a worthy investment to install a backup system that will allow them to use their air conditioning during a utility outage.
If you live in an area where conditions make adding battery backup to your solar system attractive, then the next step is to think about what you actually want to back up and for how long. Which rooms, devices, or appliances do you need to ensure will keep operating during an outage to minimize discomfort and disruption for your family? How long do you think you’ll realistically need to rely on your battery system to power them? Answering these questions will allow you to get the most value from backup by powering the systems most essential to your family staying comfortable during a temporary utility outage without breaking the bank.
What to Look For In A Home Battery
If you already have a solar installation, ensure your home battery is compatible with your panels and inverter. Know whether or not your battery system will be capable of charging while the grid is down.
Need help finding the right home battery?
Battery Supply Chain
The clean energy sector hasn’t escaped the global supply chain disruptions that have been taking place since the beginning of the pandemic. Batteries and the raw materials used to manufacture them have become more expensive to procure and more logistically difficult to ship.
Giving homeowners choices is important to us – but it’s even more important that we are able to deliver the products we sell as promised. We want to avoid a situation where a customer selects certain components during the initial consultation process, and then weeks down the line we have to tell them that their install will be delayed or that they have to select different components, possibly affecting the cost, because their picks are no longer readily available.
That’s why for the time being, we’re limiting the selection of battery and backup components we offer based on current availability. We think it’s the best way to ensure that homeowners can be confident they’ll get the system they paid for with a minimum of delays or complications.
Home Battery Incentives
Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC)
The biggest active home battery incentive in the United States – allows homeowners to claim a tax credit of 26% of the cost of any new home battery installation project. The ITC was originally slated to step down to 22% at the end of 2020, but was extended at the current value through 2022.
State & Local Incentives
Many states, cities, and utilities offer incentives for homeowners to install home batteries. Many of these incentives are in the form of tax credits or rebates. Others are capacity-based incentives, which compensate homeowners based on the amount of battery capacity installed. Our expert energy consultants can help you find and take advantage of any eligible incentives in your area.